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The Haymarket Foundation is working towards improving the nutrition and health outcomes of people experiencing homelessness.
Many residential clients have compromised immune systems due to ongoing medical conditions including HIV, and alcohol and other drug issues.
There is an international evidence base which emphasizes that a diet comprising of fresh, seasonal and unprocessed ingredients is vital to support the health needs of clients.
While the Haymarket Foundation’s crisis accommodation facility has always offered vegetarian and other dietary choices to clients, it is now extending that further.
A three-pronged approach is to be implemented, including:
Weekly organic food:
Residents of the Haymarket Foundation’s crisis accommodation facility are eating more fresh organic fruit and veggies, thanks to a weekly drop-off of donated produce from Brian’s Best Organics.
Amongst the meals prepared using that fresh seasonal produce is vegetable curries, pasta and lasagne.
A seven-day menu plan has been developed, including basic healthy meals with ethically sourced produce where possible, including organic vegetables and free-range eggs.
For the next two years, case managers from the Haymarket Foundation will be working with a number of clients who have been newly housed to ensure they maintain their tenancies.
Part of the work is ensuring that groceries are bought and people know how to look after themselves.
This includes taking people to the Addi Road Food Pantry in Marrickville, to help support them with cooking and budgeting.
Learning how to cook is often a challenge for people who have experienced homelessness, as they may not have learnt growing up, or they may have lost those skills along the way.
The food charity PlateitForward is also hoping to deliver cooking classes for residents on-site in Chippendale.
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